Posts by Melina Chan - Singapore

Indian jewelry brand Tanishq boldly celebrates remarriage

In India, remarriage has been a thorny issue, much more so for women than for men. In a patriarchal culture, there is some stigma around marrying a widowed or divorced woman, even in India’s fast-changing modern society. A TV commercial for jewelry brand Tanishq breaks new ground with a sweet, sentimental portrayal of a woman getting married for the second time around.

A bride with a dusky complexion (instead of the stereotypical fair-skinned beauty) is getting ready for her wedding but looking apprehensive. She talks animatedly and fondly with a little girl and walks with her to the mandap (the traditional Indian wedding ceremony). As the couple begins walking in a circle as part of their vows, the girl calls out to the bride, her mother, that she wants to go round and round with them. As the situation gets awkward and everyone tries to hush her, the groom calls out to the girl, picking her up before continuing with the ceremony. At the conclusion, she asks her stepfather, “Do I call you Daddy from now on?”

The brand smartly encourages India’s middle and upper middle classes to get more comfortable with the concept of a second marriage and helps to empower women with this progressive portrayal, showing the bride-to-be believing in herself. Tanishq has a history of offering modern portrayals of the Indian woman: A few years ago on our sister blog, JWTIntelligence, we wrote about a Tanishq commercial that depicted the new breed of independent, working women who don’t want to be rushed into the traditional arranged match.

Oreo puts itself at center of father, daughter ‘bonding moment’

For many working parents, it is a daily challenge to make time for their children. It’s no different in Asia, especially in a city like Hong Kong, where the modern stresses of parenting weigh on families with young children. (According to a survey conducted in Hong Kong, only 38 percent of parents spend between 1.5 to 3 hours per day with their children.) Oreo’s “Bonding moments start with Oreo” campaign—which has been adapted around Asia—encourages parents to reignite and strengthen the connection with their children through the “Twist Lick Dunk” ritual.

In a TV commercial, a little girl has tea with her big teddy bear, inviting the bear to eat an Oreo with her and showing it the ritual of eating the cookie by starting with the twist. Her father has been on the phone observing her. He hides behind the bear, who gains a pair of hands that follow her “twist and lick”; she then demonstrates the dunking of the cookie. Her father finally pushes the bear aside and completes the dunk ritual with his happy daughter. The spot ends with the girl’s voiceover telling us that the “twist” of a happy moment happens only with Oreo.

Singapore’s NTUC Income simplifies contracts, parodies the industry’s legalese

For insurance purchasers who aren’t moonlighting as lawyers, the legal jargon used to describe the terms of these products can be complicated and confusing. According to the 2012 Global Consumer Insurance Survey, most customers in Asia Pacific don’t fully understand the terms of the product at the point of purchase. Last year, leading Singaporean insurance company NTUC Income set out to address this issue, tackling consumer stress and confusion by overhauling its contracts into plain English.

A TV campaign comically outlined the shift, showcasing oddball scenarios in which everyday people attempt to hide behind jargon. In one spot, a groom’s vows are abruptly interrupted as he veers off and speed-talks his way through a legal-sounding outline of the terms and conditions of their lifelong arrangement. In another spot, a fishmonger responds to a question about whether his fish are fresh by cheekily explaining that he reserves the right to define “fresh” as caught within the past 20 days. In both spots, onscreen text asks, “What if everyone hides behind legal jargon?” before a voiceover explains that NTUC believes insurance should be made simple, honest and different.

This initiative stemmed from the insurer’s “Honest insurance” philosophy and a stated mission to identify and solve customer pains. By making it easier to understand the company’s policies, NTUC is helping customers make better informed decisions.